Published Oct 05, 2015Irish singer-songwriter Hozier has made public his intentions to sue Canadian composer Chilly Gonzales over an accusation of plagiarism.
Last week, the Pop Music Masterclass instructor had a bit of fun deconstructing Hozier's hit song "Take Me to Church," ultimately arriving at the conclusion that it bore some resemblance to a song by his close friend and collaborator — Feist's "How Come You Never Go There."
"It's almost the exact same thing," Gonzales said in the clip, which has since been taken down. "That's a crazy coincidence that my good friend and musical little sister Feist, with her song 'How Come You Never Go There,' had the exact same idea to use those chords and that slow triple time as Hozier."
He went on to say: "'Take Me to Church?' Maybe Feist should take him to court!" — but apparently Hozier is now the one filing suit.
His lawyer, Caroline Downey, told Irish paper the Sunday Times that she and her musician client are seeking legal action on the "groundless" accusations from Gonzales.
UPDATE (10/5, 4 p.m.): In a Facebook post, Hozier has clarified his position, stating that what he was really after was an apology, which he's now received. Hozier writes, "There has been some talk in the press of legal action and I'd like to clarify my position and the goings-on of the past week for fear that gossip runs unchecked, as it often does. What was sought from my end was an apology and redaction of an unfair inferral. This has been issued by Jason Beck (Chilly Gonzales), which I very much appreciate. I will continue to follow and respect his work and look forward to moving on from this issue. Jason Beck has been co-operative and understanding, and there are no hard feelings on my part."
For his part, Gonzales offered this statement and apology via Facebook: "I would like to fully retract any and all implication of copyright infringement in last week's Pop Music Masterclass 'Take Me to Church' and sincerely apologize to Hozier whose work I respect."
While we await further details in the case, compare the two tracks in question below.